Actinopterygii (ray-finned fishes) > Perciformes
(Perch-likes) > Leiognathidae
(Slimys, slipmouths, or ponyfishes)
Etymology: Leiognathus: Greek, leios = smooth + Greek, gnathos = jaw (Ref. 45335).
Environment / Climate / Range
Marine; freshwater; brackish; demersal; amphidromous; depth range 10 - 110 m (Ref. 12260). Tropical; 26°C - 29°C (Ref. 4959); 30°N - 23°S
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm 10.7  range ? - ? cm
Max length : 28.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 9710); common length : 20.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 5450)
soft rays: 14 - 15. Deep-bodied with short rounded snout and large eyes (Ref. 48635). Body silvery; caudal peduncle with a small brown saddle; anal fins yellowish; dorsal fin transparent. Strongly arched back. Naked head; with nuchal spine. Protracted mouth pointing downward.
Indo-West Pacific: Red Sea, Persian Gulf and East Africa (including Reunion, Comoros, Seychelles, Madagascar and Mauritius) to Fiji, north to the Ryukyu Islands, south to Australia.
Found in river mouths and muddy inshore areas (Ref. 2847, 37816), often in mangrove areas (Ref. 48635). Adults are coastal inhabitants found on soft bottoms, usually between depths of 10-70 meters. Juveniles are commonly found in mangrove estuaries and tidal creeks, sometimes entering the lower reaches of freshwater streams (Ref. 44894). Adults move in schools. Frequently ascend into freshwater reaches of rivers (Ref. 12693). Active by day (Ref. 12693). Feed on polychaetes, small crustaceans, small fishes (Ref. 30573) and worms (Ref. 12693). Important food fish in the tropics (Ref. 4376). Marketed fresh or dried (Ref. 12484).
James, P.S.B.R., 1984. Leiognathidae. In W. Fischer and G. Bianchi (eds.) FAO species identification sheets for fishery purposes. Western Indian Ocean (Fishing Area 51). Vol. 2. FAO, Rome. pag. var.
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 90363)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: minor commercial; aquaculture: commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingMass conversion
Estimates of some properties based on empirical models
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5002 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01888 (-0.03600 - 0.07377), b=3.01 (2.98 - 3.05), based on LWR estimates for this species (Ref. 93245
Trophic Level (Ref. 69278
): 3.0 ±0.40 se; Based on food items.
Resilience (Ref. 69278
): High, minimum population doubling time less than 15 months (K=0.35-1.88).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): Low vulnerability (16 of 100) .